I can’t believe that it’s been a year since my last post. This past year was filled with a  plan for our retirement, sale of our house, and move to Northwest Arkansas. A plan that I felt needed to be kept quiet until I gave my notice at work. That made for an unusual period of time, and a little bit isolating.

What was so hush-hush? Well, it started with buying a house during a trip in July 2011. We closed on that house 9/13/2011, taking a two week vacation to drive down with Dylan and ‘camp out’ on inflatable beds in our new digs. It also included the plans to prep and sell our house. We put our house on the market 3/1/2012 and had a sale by 4/1/2012 – right on our planned timeline. I felt that if I made my plan known at work, that it would impact my effectiveness. Particularly the way others viewed me and included me in their strategies. I noticed some of that even with my relatively short notice of 90 days.

We were incredibly fortunate to have accomplished everything on our own timeline and to have a easy house sale.

20121026-122754.jpgAnd now we are on the road, making the trip to our new home. It’s quite an emotional time for me. The Pennsylvania scenery is gorgeous, and I am thinking already about how I will miss it. Dinner with Pam, Jed, Jean and Gerry last night was wonderful,and I am already missing their friendship. But with hugs, a few tears and promises to visit, we started off on our newest adventure!

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May Day has a whole new meaning to me this year. A year from my target ‘retirement’ date. I say ‘retirement’ because I realize that it may not be a typical retirement. Does anyone have those anymore? I may very well be doing some other sort of job. But the point is, that I intend for it to be on my own terms… Of my own passion.

The milestone gives me a fresh perspective on what’s happening today. And what I want to accomplish in the next twelve months. It’s generated an excitement in me for not only my next adventure, but also for this one.

And I’m ok that 5/1 could possibly turn into 6/1, 7/1, or even 8/1 depending on the circumstances. Even the planner in me can comes to terms with that. It’s a milestone none the less.

As I’m thinking of winding down my career and doing something – dare I say – that really interests me, I am thinking that this is the perfect opportunity to reinvent myself.

Well, I may not want to reinvent myself, but it is a nice feeling to think that I could if I wanted to.  I realize now that much of my sense of self has connected with my work.  Somehow I now feel like I have more control over who I am and more freedom to do what I want.  What a great feeling.

But with that comes a sense of responsibility.  I have a much higher expectation for my next fifty years, knowing that I’m not so heavily influenced my parents, friends, being concerned about what others thought of me, etc.

So, here’s the big question… how will I make the next fifty years really count?